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A swap is a type of art trade where two Sagan 4 team members trade submission prompts, usually species. Although swaps have been a common practice for most of Sagan 4's history and are sometimes regarded as challenges similar to Prime Specimen, records of the vast majority of known swaps were lost during the limbo as a result of the forum going down, and even more swaps have likely happened without ever being recorded at all.

There are many reasons why users might agree to a swap, such as:

  • A user having an idea they aren't sure how to pull off, but think their swap partner can
  • A user wanting to make species, but not having any ideas
  • A user wanting their swap partner to make descendants of their species
  • A user wanting to spread awareness to an obscure lineage
  • A user wanting to challenge themself to work with lineages that they haven't before
  • A user wanting to challenge their swap partner to work with lineages that they haven't before

Some species which were created for swaps had a significant impact on Sagan 4; for example, the alpha:Marine Tamow, which effectively saved a major branch of the shrew lineage from a tragic watery demise, was created as part of a swap between Hydromancerx and TheBigDeepCheatsy.